Health — 02 August 2013

By Pat Anson, Editor

One of the many frustrating things about fibromyalgia is getting it properly diagnosed. According to the American College of Rheumatology, fibromyalgia patients spend an average of three to five years before being diagnosed with the chronic pain disorder.

A simple new blood test could now be on the horizon to change that.

“We’ve got really good evidence of a test that could be an important aid in the diagnosis of fibromyalgia patients,” says Tony Buffington, DVM, PhD, a professor of veterinary clinical sciences at Ohio State University and senior author of a study being published next month in the journal Analyst.

In a small study at Ohio State, researchers used a high powered infrared microscope to identify a pattern of molecules in the blood that is unique to fibromyalgia patients.

That pattern – a biological “fingerprint” of fibromyalgia – was then tested in a blind study against blood samples from patients with rheumatoid arthritis or osteoarthritis.  The blood test confirmed, with 100% accuracy, which patients had fibromyalgia.

“It separated them completely, with no misclassifications,” Buffington said. “That’s very important. It never mistook a patient with fibromyalgia for a patient with arthritis. Clearly we need more numbers, but this showed the technique is quite effective.”

Read more at National Pain Report.

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About Author

Pat Anson, Editor

Pat is Editor in Chief of American News Report. He is a veteran journalist and a former correspondent and producer for HealthWeek (PBS), Nightly Business Report (PBS) and other nationally syndicated shows. Pat has won numerous journalism awards, including a Golden Mike award for investigative reporting.

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